North Devon Council and Torridge District Council have been working together to prepare a new local plan to cover northern Devon, called the North Devon and Torridge Local Plan. It will consider the long-term vision of objectives for the area up to 2031. 

It has been prepared with the aim of ensuring that future development within northern Devon is well planned and managed effectively whilst having a positive impact on local communities, the economy and the environment. The new local plan will provide a consistent approach to planning into the future across the whole of northern Devon.

The plan was submitted to the Secretary of State on 10 June 2016, with adoption planned for mid 2018. Further details of what has happened so far and all the relevant documents are available on our examination pages.  

As part of the examination of the local plan, a series of hearing sessions were held between 22 November and 6 December 2016. At the end of the hearing sessions, the Inspector considered that the housing requirement for the plan of 17,220 was ‘sound’. However, she identified key areas where further work was required. This work has now been completed and the councils prepared Further Main Modifications to the plan which were subject to consultation between 20 July and 1 September 2017.

Following a second round of hearing sessions on 16 and 17 January 2018 the Inspector directed the councils to consult on two additional proposed modifications.  The consultation took place between 1 March and 13 April 2018.  Further details on the examination are available on our examination pages.

Weight to be given to policies of the emerging North Devon and Torridge Local Plan

From 30 April 2018 weight will be given to the policies of the emerging Local Plan when determining planning applications. Paragraph 216 of the National Planning Policy Framework allows us to do this because our emerging Local Plan is considered to have reached an advanced stage of preparation. We are now waiting for the Inspector’s Report on the plan following our recent consultation.

The degree of weight applied to individual policies takes account of the extent of change made to the policy as part of the examination process. At the moment the applied weight takes account of the proposed main modifications to be made to the Local Plan (Examination documents: SUB8 – Main Modifications (May 2016) and MMD01 – Further Main Modifications (July 2017)). This results in either moderate or significant weight being applied to the majority of the policies of the emerging Local Plan. The details of the weight to be given to each policy (236 KB) should be considered when making a planning application. 

The modifications set out above can be viewed in a track change version of the emerging Local Plan (Examination document MMD02).  All the examination documents can be can be found on our examination pages with associated Policies Maps.